BuzzFeed, one of the most viewed publishers on Facebook, has prepared for an eventuality where the social network ceases the flow of traffic to the site by instead directing its fans to download the Buzzfeed app.
Facebook last week announced that it was to deprioritise publisher content in favour of personal posts from users. Notably these personal posts are arguably more valuable to Facebook in targeting ads at users than, for example, a 17-second clip of a cat on a treadmill. As such, the situation has changed the ballgame for publishers dependent on the site for traffic.
A BuzzFeed Facebook post earlier this week from the brand confronted the changes: “Facebook is taking the news out of your News Feed, but we've got you covered.”
On how the site is adapting to the change, a BuzzFeed spokesperson told The Drum: “BuzzFeed’s mission from day one has been to create shareable content that enables meaningful interaction among families and friends; meaningful social content is our sweet spot.
“We expect to continue to fulfill that mission and transcend these News Feed changes, which confirm trends we’ve seen over the platform in recent months and have already taken steps to evolve alongside.”
Below is Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg’s announcement of the changes.
Months ago, BuzzFeed founder and chief executive Jonah Peretti said that traditional news businesses which are “opportunistically” attacking Facebook and Google only have themselves to blame for their demise after choosing not to invest more in digital despite “decades of massive cashflow”.
This was before the publication cut a third of its UK staff last month after failing to hit revenue targets.